Michael Jordan is the G.O.A.T. in more ways than just how much he won on the basketball court.
The Chicago Bulls legend, Charlotte Hornets team owner and Jordan Brand creator topped the list of highest-paid athletes of all time by Sportico on Thursday. Jordan retired from playing after his final season with the Washington Wizards in 2003.
According to the outlet’s estimates, Jordan earned $2.62 billion based on inflation-adjusted earnings and earned $2.05 billion in noninflation-adjusted earnings after he turned pro and was drafted by the Bulls with the No. 3 pick of the 1984 NBA Draft.
Sportico incorporated the about $150 million he made in royalties from Nike in 2021, the about $4.7 billion Jordan Brand made in the last fiscal year, his salary earnings from when he was playing basketball and his countless endorsements. He also teamed up with Denny Hamlin to found a NASCAR team before the start of the 2021 season.
Jordan first became a billionaire in 2014, according to Forbes’ estimates. He was the first NBA player to reach the milestone money mark.
Tiger Woods ($2.1 billion), Arnold Palmer, ($1.5 billion), Jack Nicklaus ($1.38 billion) and Cristiano Ronaldo ($1.24 billion) round out the Sportico top-five list of highest-paid athletes of all time in inflation-adjusted earnings.
LeBron James is the lone active NBA player to reach the $1 billion mark. He is worth $1.17 billion in inflation-adjusted earnings.